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Multiple Realities and Other Interruptions of Pragmatic Everyday Life: A Dialectic

  • Michael Barber
Chapter
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Part of the Contributions To Phenomenology book series (CTPH, volume 91)

Abstract

After his 1945 essay “On Multiple Realities” and by the time of his 1955 essay “Symbolism, Reality, and Society,” Schutz had changed his paradigm for considering multiple realities. Whereas he introduced the idea of communication only at the end of the earlier essay, communication and sign/symbol practices form the overarching framework for multiple realities. Schutz rehabilitates the individual who uses marks and indications, but also introduces into everyday life signs, though which one seeks to understand another and in which one discovers limits to pragmatic mastery since one can never understand another as others understand themselves. Signs foreshadow the symbols by which one reaches multiple realities beyond everyday life and by being located in everyday life serve to bridge the gap between everyday life and symbols. The pattern of multiple realities resisting the pragmatic mastery sought for in everyday life find parallels in the many ways in which Schutz’s concepts and writings exhibit the pragmatic agent reaching out from its 0-point to bring under its mastery what resists it and encountering, in a dialectical fashion, frequent interruptions of that mastery, for instance, in one’s use of tools, locomotion, typification deployment, or ethnocentrism.

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael Barber
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhilosophySaint Louis UniversitySaint LouisUSA

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